If you’ve been through a traumatic event, the right kind of treatment can be crucial when it comes to dealing with issues like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, or anxiety. While treatments like therapy and medications can often help with these problems, you may also want to consider acupuncture for PTSD.
This treatment is increasingly popular among people who are open to alternative forms of physical and mental therapy. If you are among the legions of people who have taken to searching on the internet for “acupuncture therapy near me” we hope you will consider turning to Serenity Trauma Healing Center in Malibu, California.
Using acupuncture along with the help of medications or therapies can boost your health benefits and maximize your results. Its effectiveness has stood the test of time for a reason—so let’s take a closer look at how it can help you to get through the effects of trauma and take the next step forward.
What is Acupuncture For PTSD and Mental Health?
Acupuncture is a time-honored practice that has its origins in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It is a minimally invasive procedure in which extremely thin, metallic needles are inserted into a patient’s skin at various sites to stimulate bodily tissues, organs, glands, and the immune system. These thin needles can remain inserted for fifteen minutes at a time or longer, which helps relieve stress from PTSD.
During the procedure, the acupuncturist often gently manipulates the needles or runs a mild electric current through them to generate pleasurable electrical stimulation. Alternatively, the practitioner may use heated needles. Acupuncture sessions typically last 30 to 60 minutes.
According to Chinese medicinal tradition, the human body contains hundreds of “acupuncture points” that are connected by a complicated network of pathways (meridians). Keeping these pathways in optimal condition is key to maintaining “Qi” (pronounced “chee”), or healthy energy flow. The disruption of Qi is believed to be linked to a wide range of physical and mental maladies.
Acupuncture works by manipulating these points of the body and enabling Qi to flow properly. This manipulation is performed with the aid of specialized acupuncture needles.
Following a session, patients often report a sensation of relaxation and restfulness. Others feel energized, while still more feel nothing out of the ordinary.
The benefits of acupuncture vary widely. Relevant factors include the type of condition being treated as well as its longevity—symptoms that have developed recently are easier to treat.
The number of treatments needed vary as well. Mild health conditions often resolve after only two or three sessions. Some conditions require ten or more sessions, while some chronic conditions call for ongoing treatment. Beneficial effects do not necessarily develop immediately. In fact, it is common for patients to feel no pain relief or reduction of symptoms after the first few visits.
Finally, the frequency of treatment is dependent on the overall health of the patient and the type of condition they have. Some serious medical conditions demand two or three sessions per week. In other cases, the patient may get good results with only one session per month. In any event, the patient’s progress will be continually monitored so modifications to their treatment plan can be made.
What Is Acupuncture Used For?
Acupuncture is often used as a treatment for addiction and for the prevention and treatment of trauma or PTSD. Research in the past decade has shown that acupuncture is a helpful somatic therapy that rebalances the brain after significant stress, as well as the nervous and hormonal systems. Acupuncture treatment after exposure to traumatic events can help prevent the development of post-traumatic stress disorder. With more extended treatment, acupuncture can also restore resiliency for those who suffer from long-term PTSD.
Acupuncture is also commonly used to treat a variety of other medical conditions and diseases, including:
- Anxiety and depression
- Tooth pain
- Neck pain
- Postoperative nausea and vomiting
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Lower back pain
Acupuncture is widely recognized as a powerful therapeutic procedure that can be used to relieve many psychological and physical disorders. The effectiveness of acupuncture has been confirmed by studies conducted by a number of respected health care organizations, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Mayo Clinic.
Taking Away Pain and So Much More
Most people think of the effects of trauma as mental health conditions, but phenomena like PTSD and stress can also manifest themselves with physical pain. Acupuncture has been used to help people with chronic pain for centuries and is often used to help with headaches, back pain, and arthritis. It can also help to fight nausea while relaxing you enough to help you get a good night’s sleep.
Is Acupuncture Safe?
Acupuncture is considered very safe when it is performed by a trained professional who uses sterile needles. Serious complications from acupuncture can usually be traced to improper procedures or non-sterile needles. Acupuncture that is poorly performed can lead to infection, organ damage, or tissue injury. An inexperienced practitioner can easily break a needle while inserting it. These are all reasons why it is vital to seek out an experienced acupuncturist.
Normally, patients experience a slight degree of pain as the needles are inserted into their skin. Some patients experience minor side effects, such as bruising, soreness, or slight bleeding in the areas where the needles contact the skin. Patients who are on blood-thinning medication or suffer from a bleeding disorder are more likely to experience these complications. Occasionally, patients report sensations of nausea or dizziness.
The needles used in modern-day acupuncture are generally made out of stainless steel. They come in a variety of sizes; some are longer and thinner than others.
Thicker needles tend to generate a higher degree of stimulation. Extremely thin needles are more comfortable for the patient but also more difficult for the acupuncturist to handle. These types of needles are extremely flexible, to the point where they are difficult to insert without bending.
The depth of insertion is another factor that varies according to circumstances. Fatty areas of the body can accommodate deeper insertions than, for instance, the face or hands. Insertion depth also depends on the patient’s constitution and the type of condition being treated.
The number of needles used during the procedure can range from one or two to over a dozen at a time.
Needles are used only once. After a session, the acupuncturist properly disposes of them. This helps protect the patient’s health by eliminating the risk of infection from reusing needles.
Is Acupuncture Right for You?
Whether you’ve been through a traumatic event, you’re worried about your mental health, or you’re dealing with chronic pain for which nothing seems to help, acupuncture could be the answer.
If you’re in the Malibu, CA area and you’re interested in acupuncture, Serenity Trauma Healing Center can help. We are state- and JCAHO-accredited, and proud to serve as your premier out-of-network provider.
You don’t need to deal with the effects of trauma on your own. Contact Serenity Trauma Healing Center today to start feeling better and moving forward.